Racism and colourism exists in India too: Malavika Mohanan

Racism and colourism exists in India too: Malavika Mohanan

Actress Malavika Mohanan is one of the few actresses in the industry who never refrains from speaking her mind.

Disturbed by the death of 46-year-old African American, George Floyd, a victim of racial discrimination, Malavika Mohanan took to Instagram to recall an unpleasant incident that she encountered as a teenager. She also pointed out that casual racism and discrimination of people exists in Indian society and how a few still address dark-skinned people as Madrasis.

Malavika Mohanan wrote, "When I was 14 yrs old, one of my closest friends at that point told me that his mother never let him drink tea because she had this weird belief that drinking tea darkened ones’ skin complexion, and when he asked for tea once she told him(referring to me) “If you drink tea, you will become dark like her”. He was a fair maharashtrian boy and I was a wheat-ish skinned malayalee girl. The complexion dissimilarity we had had never even occurred to me up until that point. This left me perplexed because it was the first time somebody had made a comment like that with a mean undertone about my skin colour. So much casual racism and colourism exists in our own society (sic)."

She also emphasised that being good and kind will define a person and not the colour of their skin. "Calling a dark skinned person ‘kala’ is something we see on an everyday basis. The discriminatory behaviour against south-Indians and North-East Indians is also appalling. Dark skinned Indians are jokingly referred to as ‘madrasis’ because for some strange reason these ignorant people think all South Indians are only dark skinned. North-East Indians are almost exclusively only called ‘chinki’, all black people are casually referred to as ‘negros’ and fair people are equated as beautiful and dark skinned people are equated as ugly. While we speak about global racism, we must also become aware about what’s happening around us, in our homes, our friend circles and our society, and do our part in thwarting the obvious as well as the subtle racism and colourism that exists all around us, in our everyday lives. What makes you beautiful is being a good and kind person, and not the colour of your skin (sic)."

George Floyd's death triggered widespread protests across the US and many celebrities have been speaking up about how black lives matter. The hashtag #BlackLivesMatter has been trending on social media for the last few days.

On the professional front, Malavika Mohanan is currently awaiting the release of her upcoming film, Master, which features Vijay in the lead role. The film was supposed to hit the screens on April 9. However, due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, the makers have postponed it.